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Brechin City – Keeping the Faith?

Date: 4th May 2019

By Donald C Stewart

That would probably rule out most fan groups, at least we think it might, but one group of fans that I have a massive respect for are those up in plucky Brechin where they face oblivion or at least League Two should they not manage a feat that has now become all the more difficult.

Last season they set records; the wrong sort.

The background to their season as set when they found themselves in a pickle because they got promoted in season 2016/17 when they should not have been.

They were not ready, they found the season one in which they were underfunded, under performed and under the pressure of being a little team in a big league.

It led, as we know to a whole season which was endured without a league win. They got the BBC cameras for their final game, as they had cameras for the final game when they won promotion but the contrast could not have been more obvious.

In fairness to the club, they had kept faith in their manager throughout, Darren Dods, and the hope must have been that they would spring back up to at least the top half of League One.

Dods was no stranger to tough times as the Brechin manager. He had endured a torturous first season in 2015/16 where it took a late run of form kept them out of the relegation places in league One. The next year the delight and disbelief on the terraces came after wins against Alloa and Raith in the playoffs and unbelievably they were in the Championship; Dods deserved the faith as he had repaid it before.

It was not going to take much but this year, statistically at least, has been better… so far.

Of 35 games played, they have won 9 more than they did last year in the league. The position they occupy though is no better.

They are at the foot. They are one game away from the playoffs again… The wrong type – but at least they are in with a shout of making these ones.

Dods departed in October with an overall win ratio that has not really been bettered by his successor, Barry Smith. Smith has some record with clubs needing a bit of a Houdini feel and made some clubs very successful; the biggest feat Brechin City fans would have liked him to emulate is the 23 game unbeaten one when he was at Dundee – just 5 would be good though…

They have the game against Stenhousemuir today, the team one point above them. Brechin need a draw to send them into the playoffs; neither can avoid a day of reckoning – though for one it will fall today and they shall fall down into League Two – the “victor” gest to fight another day, and possibly another 3 days.

If they get into the playoffs they join Annan Athletic and Edinburgh City alongside either Peterhead or Clyde.

At Brechin, things off field do not seem to be truly harmonious and you couldn’t make this up but a murder mystery night had to recently be cancelled due to lack of interest. When launching the murder mystery event, the club appealed directly to “the fine people of Brechin and beyond” to attend “an evening full of intrigue and suspicion”. Some wit must surely have tagged the idea with a comment that hope must have been truly murdered some time ago…

Surely?

No?

No.

Of this though we can be sure in a campaign that has the edge of intrigue and genuine competition attached. Hard core Brechin fans will turn up and turn out today. They shall cheer, sing and shake their heads, often burying them in a hedge. Perhaps they will, at the end of the season those fine people of Brechin and beyond decide to have enough of intrigue and suspicion, settling for prominent characters around the club to be less playing out a drama and more interrogating the fixtures as they examine the opposition and ultimately get into better shape… Watch their space is all you will need to find out…

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